Moderna, McKesson ready to roll out vaccine

FedEx said Saturday operations are underway to transport Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines throughout the U.S. It says it’ll use its FedEx Priority Overnight service to ship the vaccines for drug distributor McKesson.

McKesson and Moderna said they’re ready to begin shipping to more than 3,800 sites this weekend, vastly widening the rollout begun last week with Pfizer. The moves come on the heels of the Food and Drug Administration’s approval Friday of Moderna’s vaccine for emergency use.

U.S. Army General Gustave Perna:

"Distribution of Moderna vaccine has already begun. Moderna has moved vaccine from their fill finish manufacturing sites to McKesson, who will serve as the central distributor. At McKesson distribution centers, boxes are being packed and loaded today. Trucks will begin rolling out tomorrow from FedEx and UPS, delivering vaccines and kits to the American people across the United States … I want to make sure that we are 100% committed to fair and equitable distribution to everybody in the United States of America, and I give you my personal word, that is what I’m driving to.”

The package delivery companies are giving priority to vaccines on planes and trucks that are moving holiday gifts and other cargo. Their drivers will deliver directly to vaccination sites, unlike Pfizer’s which was sent to large hubs for redistribution.

That’s because the U.S. government’s Operation Warp Speed is calling the shots on Moderna’s distribution, whereas Pfizer organized its own distribution system.

Moderna’s vaccines are available in smaller quantities and can be stored for longer periods in standard temperature refrigerators than Pfizer’s vaccines, so some state officials say they expect Moderna to be the primary vaccine for people who live in rural areas.

Video Transcript

- FedEx said Saturday operations are underway to transport Moderna's COVID-19 vaccines throughout the United States. It says it will use its FedEx priority overnight service to ship the vaccines for drug distributor, McKesson. McKesson and Moderna say they're ready to begin shipping to more than 3,800 sites this weekend, vastly widening the rollout begun last week with Pfizer.

The moves come on the heels of the Food and Drug Administration's approval Friday of Moderna's vaccine for emergency use. US Army General Gustave Perna.

GUSTAVE PERNA: Distribution of Moderna vaccine has already begun. Moderna has moved vaccine from their fill finish manufacturing sites to McKesson, who will serve as the central distributor. At McKesson distribution centers, boxes are being packed and loaded today. Trucks will begin rolling out tomorrow from FedEx and UPS, delivering vaccines and kits to the American people across the United States.

I want to make sure that we are 100% committed to fair and equitable distribution to everybody in the United States of America. And I give you my personal word, that is what I'm driving to.

- The package delivery companies are giving priority to vaccines on planes and trucks that are moving holiday gifts and other cargo. Their drivers will deliver directly to vaccination sites, unlike Pfizer's, which was sent to large hubs for redistribution. That's because the US government's Operation Warp Speed is calling the shots on Moderna's distribution, whereas Pfizer organized its own distribution system.

Moderna's vaccines are available in smaller quantities, and can be stored for longer periods in standard temperature refrigerators than Pfizer's vaccines, so some state officials say they expect Moderna to be the primary vaccine for people who live in rural areas.